Gili Meno, how we got stuck in paradise

This is the nicest beach in Gili Meno with sand

I guess that’s not bad to be stuck in Paradise …  And this is what happened:    After finally leaving Nusa Dua we were craving to see some authenticity of the Balinese life, beaches and people.  We always dreamed about Gili Islands and taking a trip to Komodo Islands ( yes, to see the biggest lizards  on a earth , Komodos ) . Once we realized this is the rainy / monsoon season we knew we aren’t going to see the famous Komodos, we started to question ourselves whether we should go to Gili islands as well.    We changed our minds influenced by our son’s best friend Nikki , the avid traveler who we love and trust her opinion.  The tickets to Gili islands by all means aren’t cheap so isn’t the accommodation there. But who knows if we will have a chance to come back again.   We chosen Gili Mano the smallest of the Gili islands mainly because our good friend’s cousin lives on that island… talking about small world.  We took the Indra Jaya Fast Boat (this is the only boat that stops at Gili Meno).  The trip took only about 2 hours but without a doubt couple times I had my stomach turning around. The waves were quite big, and the small boat caring 60 passengers was going very fast.

This small boat carried 60 passengers
Thank God for so many motors
This is actually Gili T harbor …. the boat stops on a beach, wear sandals !

Once we arrived to the island, Livia was waiting for us and we had no more doubts we made the right decision.  The island was beautiful and our accommodation was exactly as we were imagining… a small bungalow directly on a beach , with a covered porch great  to sit outside during rain.  Almost perfect…our accommodation didn’t  have  AC,  internet and even hot water.   We didn’t care about it as  we were waking up everyday to this view.   Thank you Livia !

Our view !
Newly open Sunset Beach cottages
View of the Adeng Volcano, Bali

The weather was sunny and windy.   Just the  perfect vacation.  We were planning to spend 4 days there. On our third day we learned all fast boats for the next 5 days got cancelled.  Not a bad place to get stuck. Likely we didn’t have any immediate reservation in our next place.   Peter took this extended stay as an opportunity to take the PADI certification.  Something he always wanted but never had time to do it .

Peter and James
After a dive

I got my snorkeling fix, as I was able to snorkel from the beach each day.   Most beaches on Gili Meno are coral beaches, that said it’s hard to walk barefoot.   The biggest attraction there are the big turtles.  This is the perfect environment for them, the dead coral. There are also abundance of fish, many of them we’ve seen for the first time.

Last dinner with friends
Me and Livia
Gili Meno

P1020862 P1020914

The time on the island went fast and it was time so say Good Bye to our new friends.  We got to the harbor in the morning just to learned the fast boat got cancelled again!    At first we thought that was a joke, but it wasn’t .  Since this time we really had to go , the company offered us to take us to Lembar, Lombok to get to Bali by slow public ferry.   There were many people in  similar situation.  The transportation from Gili Meno to Lembar, Lombok went really fast and well organized.  Just in two hours we got to the port and an hour later we boarded the slow ferry.   During the time in port local people flooded the ferry selling everything and I mean everything… It was just crazy.

Waiting for the slow ferry. There wasn’t much too eat there… Peter enjoys his cup of soup
Passengers and local vendors awaiting embarkation

Finally our boat left the port.  Probably 95% passengers were tourists, as aparently all fast boast got cancelled that day.   The trip on the slow ferry took much longer than we were expecting. Let’s just say we wouldn’t recommend to take the slow ferry to anyone.

It was almost eleven o’clock by the time we got to the hotel.